World Bank nominee called 'anti-growth'

March 27, 2012 at 2:17 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 27 (UPI) -- President Barack Obama's nominee to lead the World Bank is facing criticism for being "anti-growth," an economics professor said.

The nominee, Jim Yong Kim, currently the president of Dartmouth College, wrote in the introduction of a book he co-edited that, "The studies in this book present evidence that the quest for growth in gross domestic product and corporate profits has in fact worsened the lives of millions of women and men."

The book, published in 2000, was entitled, "Dying For Growth: Global Inequality and the Health of the Poor," the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.

"Dr. Kim would be the first World Bank president ever who seems to be anti-growth," William Easterly, an economics professor at New York University, was quoted as saying in the Financial Times.

"Even the severest of World Bank critics like me think that economic growth is what we want," Easterly said.

Easterly is a co-director of New York University's Development Research Institute. A posting on the institute's Web site is entitled, "Some Not Entirely Typical Remarks by a World Bank President."

Part of the posting says, "Obama should have redirected (Kim's) resume to the Human Resource Department of the Central Bank of Cuba."

Kim, an anthropologist and a physician with a degree from Harvard Medical School, served as director of the World Health Organization's Department of HIV/AIDS.

"Jim has spent more than two decades working to improve conditions in developing countries around the world," Obama said last week in announcing Kim's nomination. "The World Bank is one of the most powerful tools we have to reduce poverty and raise standards of living around the globe, and Jim's personal experience and years of service make him an ideal candidate for this job."

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